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I love true open tops. The Miata (or MX-5) has a clever way of doing safety. A strong and stylish rollbar.

 

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I don't think the smart's roll bar is inferior to the Miata's. But, that's just gut. See no reason to believe it is. And certainly a better roll bar wouldn't have helped in the accident which is the subject of this thread.

I've gotta admit, I thought the Tridion would've held up better than it did. I almost always leave my rails in ... can't hurt. But, as steveg said, key is avoidance ... and an alert driver in a nimble car has an advantage in that department.
 

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NCC, I didn't suggest the Miata's was better. :confused: :(

But yeah, I agree. I thought it would've looked a little less mangled...but at 40+ MPH and that van, I can see why.

And of course, rescue efforts often damage the vehicle even further.
 

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My gut feeling is a coupe would have faired slightly better in this particular scenario. I think a true fore aft connection would have helped kept the car from folding in. I keep seeing that passenger side dash in the seat. But I remind myself My old Civic would have been a tin can in this kind of accident. I was very nearly in the same in that. Still not sure how it didn't happen at the way past last second.

Of course our convertible is really safe. It has a v8 drum brakes and lap belts.


I lost a childhood friend just out of high school. He was a muscle car guy who always wanted a British roadster. He moved to Texas got a job on an oil rig and bought an MGB. One fine afternoon some tool in a pickup ran a red light. End of story. Only the good die young.

After my near miss a couple of years ago I'm more convinced than ever t all the safety equipment in the world only works if it isn't your time. When your number comes up that's all there is to it.

My heart goes out to both folks in this collision and their families.
 

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It never ceases to amaze me. Most every day there is a horrific collision like this on all of our commutes. People slow down to look and see the carnage. Then as soon as they get past it so many of them resume the same stupid driving behavior that caused the mess they just witnessed! No cause and effect connection made at all.
 

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I love true open tops. The Miata (or MX-5) has a clever way of doing safety. A strong and stylish rollbar.

Stylish yes, strong maybe not?

Check out the "safety equipment" listed on the Miata webpage - no roll bar?

Mazda MX-5 Miata Convertible Sports Car - Specs & Features | Mazda USA

The "safety" pictured above would not pass the "broomstick test." Your head should not exceed the plane created from the top of the windshield frame to the top of the roll bar - perhaps you too can visualize a potential problem for BOTH the driver and passenger?



That's a "Style bar" which is not structural offering little to no roll over protection. A proper roll bar would have four legs that mount to the trunk floor and to the Miata floor.

Several other convertibles have similar "beauty bars" and hopefuly their owners are aware that while stylish there is little protection?
 

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Stylish yes, strong maybe not?

Check out the "safety equipment" listed on the Miata webpage - no roll bar?

Mazda MX-5 Miata Convertible Sports Car - Specs & Features | Mazda USA

The "safety" pictured above would not pass the "broomstick test." Your head should not exceed the plane created from the top of the windshield frame to the top of the roll bar - perhaps you too can visualize a potential problem for BOTH the driver and passenger?



That's a "Style bar" which is not structural offering little to no roll over protection. A proper roll bar would have four legs that mount to the trunk floor and to the Miata floor.

Several other convertibles have similar "beauty bars" and hopefuly their owners are aware that while stylish there is little protection?
- Isn't there a law of some sort to have roll protection in a convertible???

But you're right, the driver's head greatly surpasses the rollbar...that won't be pretty even if it is strong... :O
 

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Based on the angle of the minivan crumple and the smart's passenger side destruction, it appears the the smart may have swerved to the left.

Someone mentioned this was a 40 MPH road, which would suggest the cars may have hit each other at at what might feel like 80 MPH into a brick wall. If either or both drivers were braking prior to impact, that speed would be somewhat less.

The cabrio has additional strength (vs a coupe) in the A pillar which mainly helps in a rollover situation. The cabrio roll bar also has the same strengthening...Neither of these things help much when going from 80 MPH to 0 in a very short distance. But the smart DID keep the driver alive.

In another accident in Maryland a few weeks ago, a Ford Escort and PT Cruiser collided head on in a very similar situation. Similar aged drivers, with the older driver crossing the centerline. The Escort did not protect that driver.

One killed, one injured in head-on crash near Calvert - Local News - Mobile Adv
 

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Discussion Starter #31
Some much for open air. It really needs that roof structure replaced on the smart cabrio. The driver was lucky he did get hit on the left side.





This is a older Miata's. Looks like head on damage. It didn't fold. Metal doors too. The engine retarded some of the crash.



Added roll bar protection.

 

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Only 2% of ALL crashes in the U.S. are head-on. The smart cabrio population represents a very small portion of the total population.

That's why we have choices and such events are called accidents.

Sent from AutoGuide.com Free App
 

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Someone mentioned this was a 40 MPH road, which would suggest the cars may have hit each other at at what might feel like 80 MPH into a brick wall.
This is incorrect. If two vehicles of the same mass hit head on, both moving at X MPH, it isn't as if they struck a wall at 2X MPH, but rather just as 1X MPH.

The critical part of the above is "of the same mass". The smart weighs less than the van, so assuming they were both moving at the same rate, the smart would take proportionally more of the impact's energy.

If the vehicles' speeds were unequal that further complicates the equation.
 

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This is incorrect. If two vehicles of the same mass hit head on, both moving at X MPH, it isn't as if they struck a wall at 2X MPH, but rather just as 1X MPH.

The critical part of the above is "of the same mass". The smart weighs less than the van, so assuming they were both moving at the same rate, the smart would take proportionally more of the impact's energy.

If the vehicles' speeds were unequal that further complicates the equation.
Beat me at my own game!

And as someone noted earlier, it looks like the smart driver jerked left in an attempt to avoid the crash.

So, not only do we have high speed, but greatly differing weight and probably a big offset! :O
 

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I heard from a reliable source (another smart owner that personally knew him) that the driver of the smart car did pass away.

Thoughts and prayers to the surviving family.
 

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This just turned really tragic. Thoughts go out to the family...

And, since this thread is now in violation of rules for the accident forum, perhaps we should close it in respect for the families involved?
 
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